Bellingcat claims it has identified second Skripal poisoning suspect as military doctor

Clay Curtis
October 9, 2018

Amy Kellogg has the story.

One of the two suspects in the poisoning of an ex-spy in England is a doctor who works for Russian military intelligence and travelled to Britain under an alias, investigative group Bellingcat reported Monday.

"During his medical studies, Mishkin was recruited by the GRU, and by 2010 had relocated to Moscow, where he received his undercover identity - including a second national ID and travel passport - under the alias Aleksandr Petrov", the report said.

Bellingcat last month identified Boshirov as a colonel in the GRU whose real name was Anatoliy Chepiga.

The Skripals were found unconscious on March 4 on a bench in the southern English town of Salisbury.

Skripal, a former GRU colonel, was convicted of treason in 2006 by a Russian court after being accused of spying for Britain.

Bellingcat's latest investigation said Mishkin was born in 1979 in the Archangelsk District in northern Russia and graduated from the elite Military Medical Academies, where he was trained for medical work in the Russian navy.

As in Boshirov's case, the group also relied upon "multiple open sources" and "testimony from people familiar with the person" in question.

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Bellingcat says Dr Mishkin travelled extensively between 2011 and 2018, to Ukraine and to the Transnistrian Republic, an unrecognised self-declared republic.

Footage released by London police of the two suspects in the poisoning of Sergei Skripal.

Mishkin was born in July 1979 in the village of Loyga in the Archangelsk district of northern Russian Federation, and until September 2014 his registered home address in Moscow was the same as the headquarters of the GRU, Bellingcat said.

British Prime Minister Theresa May said the attack was likely ordered at the highest levels of the Russian government, an allegation vehemently rejected by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

In June, a British citizen, Dawn Sturgess, died and her boyfriend, Charlie Rowley, fell ill when they stumbled across remnants of the poison in a town near Salisbury.

Investigative news outlet Bellingcat has tracked down what it says are the true identities of the two suspects, who claim they were only tourists.

Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov told RT's editor-in-chief they had nothing to do with the Skripals' poisoning. They said they went to the city to visit its cathedral.

In its previous reporting, the team already produced evidence that "Alexander Petrov" is not an authentic persona, but an undercover alias for an officer of a Russian security agency.

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